D.J. Render has always wanted to play college football at its highest level, so when Kansas State offered the speedy receiver from Kennesaw, Ga., a scholarship earlier this month he worked quickly to accept it.
In less than three weeks, Render scheduled an unofficial visit to campus, booked a flight to Manhattan and orally committed to K-State coach Bill Snyder and assistant Andre Coleman while there Monday.
“I always wanted to go big,” Render said by phone while traveling home. “Kansas State popped into the mix and I was interested right away. They were a big school that believed in me and my talents. I stepped on campus and immediately felt at home. Everything felt great so I committed.”
Render chose K-State over offers from FCS schools Chattanooga and East Tennessee State. He also received interest from Syracuse, Wake Forest and Boston College. He does not currently have a star ranking in the Rivals recruiting database.
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But he could help the Wildcats in several ways on offense. Render played several positions for North Cobb High School, shifting from wide receiver to slot receiver and running back, scoring touchdowns on pass plays from different spots. He also spent time on defense when his coaches needed extra speed at defensive back. Though he figures to play predominantly slot receiver at K-State.
“That is my favorite position,” Render said. “But, obviously, I will line up wherever Kansas State needs me to. When I am focused and have my mind right I can do anything to the best of my ability. Speed is what really helps me get to where I need to. I have great speed and quickness. I make people miss in open space. That is my specialty.”
Render is K-State’s third commitment for its 2016 recruiting class, joining four-star quarterback Skylar Thompson, of Independence, Mo., and Lincoln, Neb., tight end Nick Lenners.
Render expects to return to K-State for an official visit when his team has a bye week during his senior season.
“It is a relief to commit to Kansas State,” Render said. “I feel like for my senior year, now, I can go out there and ball out, have a great year and get ready for college.”